Posted on June 2, 2017

Kid’s Funny Medical Questions

Kids are incredibly curious and sometimes, as adults, we forget the purity and innocence that is involved in their curiosity, especially when it comes to their health and their bodies. Of course, as parents and caregivers, we often give them answers to some of those questions that may be incorrect or an extension of the ‘truth’, hoping that we can keep them safe.  But there are some questions that the kids ask their doctors that go from the logical to the hysterical.

Almost every has hiccups at one time or another and for some, hiccups can happen a lot. Kids are fascinated with hiccups, mainly because they are (for the most part) not dangerous to their health. Doctors get the question as to what causes hiccups as well as how to stop them once they start. While a pediatrician may try to tell a child the actual definition of hiccups as: “Hiccups are sudden, involuntary contractions of the diaphragm muscle”, this makes little sense to them. Many simply describe hiccups as a ‘bouncing muscle’ in the tummy. Getting rid of them is another story and lots of people have their own remedies. The best way to stop the ‘bouncing’ is to extend the arms way above your head, stretching the tummy and the muscle and breathing in and out deeply for around four breaths.

A curious thing happens to people when they see a ‘yawn’. Almost all will experience an imitation of the yawn. Kids seem to hold this one topic as endearing as they know that they can yawn in front of their dog and eventually, the family pet will also yawn. Studies have shown that this contagious habit isn’t developed in children until around the age of four years. For kids, we typically tell them that being ‘sleepy’ is contagious and that’s why we yawn. However, in a Smithsonianmag.com article they explain: “Snakes and fish do it. Cats and dogs do it. Even human babies do it inside the womb…. Yawning appears to be ubiquitous within the animal kingdom. But despite being such a widespread feature, scientists still can’t explain why yawning happens, or why for social mammals, like humans and their closest relatives, it’s contagious.”

While there are many hypotheses for yawning that are false, the truer explanation can be found in the same article: “Yawning—a stretching of the jaw, gaping of the mouth and long deep inhalation, followed by a shallow exhalation—may serve as a thermoregulatory mechanism, says Andrew Gallup, a psychology professor at SUNY College at Oneonta. In other words, it’s kind of like a radiator. In a 2007 study, Gallup found that holding hot or cold packs to the forehead influenced how often people yawned when they saw videos of others doing it. When participants held a warm pack to their forehead, they yawned 41 percent of the time. When they held a cold pack, the incidence of yawning dropped to 9 percent.”

One of the biggest responses from parents has to do with kids putting their fingers up their noses or inside their ears. Some parents tell their kids that if they do this, their fingers will get stuck in their noses or ears. Turning to the doctors for a response will get a closer rendition as it relates to the amount of germs or potential internal damage that fingers can cause.